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Planning a new HTPC/Server

delta_42

Established Member
Just taken delivery of some new kit, I'm going to be doing some experimenting with an all-purpose box.

The idea is for a box that can run a TV backend, XBMC front end and also hold a few TB of media.

I've already got a server, which is running Windows Server 2012 Essentials, but I want to seperate my home media stuff from my business stuff.

Also I wanted to play around with some AMD tech as I've been mostly Intel for several years. I've got a couple of Brazoz/Hudson based HTPCs, but wanted something a little meatier.

So... the build is looking like :

Case : Custom case manufactured by Lian Li, based on the PC-Q25, but slightly bigger and capable of taking 7 x 3.5" drives in hot-swap racks. It's one of a batch of engineering samples I had made for a project that didn't come off!

Motherboard : Asrock FM2A85X-ITX - Skt FM2 ITX board, a great fit with my case as it has 7 SATA ports on an ITX board!:thumbsup:

CPU : I went middle of the road and got an AMD A6 5400K, dual core.

System drives : Undecided about a system drive, depends what OS will be on there. If its Linux based, then I just picked up a 16Gb SSD which will do nicely.

Data drives : 4 x 3Tb WD Red

TV tuner : dual DVB-S2 card

PSU : BeQuiet 300W 80Plus

The idea is to have a play around with various TV backends, Mythbuntu (which will be fun as my Linux skills extend to spelling it!), MediaPortal and others, with XBMC as a front end.

Eventually, if I get it working, I'll swap the tuner out for a quad tuner, maybe eventually go for a larger system with multiple quad tuners based on an mATX board.
 

delta_42

Established Member
:rotfl: Typical, I forgot to order memory, and I forgot to add it into my list too.

For the time being I'll just be using some bog standard Corsair DDR3-1333, until I get chance to order some faster stuff.
 

spacemanc

Established Member
Any reason you're not considering MediaPortal?
 

delta_42

Established Member
Any reason you're not considering MediaPortal?

The idea is to have a play around with various TV backends, Mythbuntu (which will be fun as my Linux skills extend to spelling it!), MediaPortal and others, with XBMC as a front end.

I'll have a play with it at the back end, but so far I prefer XBMC at the front end as it gives me the option to have the same front end on our Android tablets and any HTPCs, although that might change. I do love XBMC as a front end, especially my newly discovered joy of OpenELEC!!
 

spyder viewer

Distinguished Member
Is MP available for linux? You have to be very young to install mythbuntu properly. It'll take that long. Try TVheadend if you can find a download site.
 
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delta_42

Established Member
OK, so I've ditched Mythbuntu, and I'm installing standard Ubuntu. I tried XBMCbuntu, and installed TVHeadend, but couldn't get the drivers for my TBS-6981 installed. So now I'm keeping things standard. If I'm still struggling later I might jack Ubuntu altogether and try something different, like Windows Embedded or TVHeadend on top of OpenMediaVault
 

delta_42

Established Member
Just realised that I might have been dumb and tried to install the 64 bit drivers on XBMCbuntu instead of the 32 bit. If the 32 bit versions work ok on the standard OS, then I'll go back and try XBMCbuntu again as it saves several steps should I want to do it again!

The aim is to have an all-in-one HTPC/server/DVR, that can record live TV and share it out to other devices via the PVR capabillites of XBMC.

Huzzah, as I type, I've just got the drivers working in standard Ubuntu... so I was being dumb after all :facepalm:
 

delta_42

Established Member
Well now... its all working... TVHeadEnd on top of XBMCbuntu, with XBMC on Windows and Android connecting to it... got my first few programmes set up to record.

The setup still needs some work. The motherboard is on a test bench, and the OS is installed on an old 80Gb drive I had knocking about. I'll probably keep the OS there, and add a few data drives. I've got some 2Tb drives sat gathering dust, I might need the 3Tb drives for work, so I'll not use them. I also still need to do some tweaking to my channel setup to get them into some sort of sensible order and to get rid of duplicates and subscription channels.

Once I realised that I'd misinterpreted the info about what kernel I was running, it was actually quite straightforward to get it all working.

I can see me getting quite carried away with this, and swapping the ITX board for something bigger, and getting a quad tuner card or two!
 

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